Professor AAA wrote: “I am happy to agree with Professor BBB that there is reason to be ‘suspicious’ of Attorney General Barr, at least as a general matter. I am willing to take that view not only in light of his role in the Iran-Contra pardons, but also because of his decision to offer an unsolicited legal opinion to the Trump Administration attacking a legal theory that he believed, on the basis of thinly-sources press reports, that Mr. Mueller was pursuing.” (emphasis added).
Barr sent a letter to a public official. Barr has particular expertise—he had some years ago worked in the Department of Justice and as Attorney General. Barr’s communication was not protected by any sort of confidentiality. He is just a citizen writing his government about a matter of intense public interest. But for Professor AAA, this is a cause for “suspicion”? Really?!—why? I think Professor AAA’s statement is an extraordinary exemplar of the decline of U.S. and Western free speech norms.
Am I really the first (and the only) person on Conlawprof to see a problem here? What a depressing turn of events. See generally: Seth Barrett Tillman, Bob Bauer’s Free Speech Problem and Ours, New Reform Club (July 23, 2017, 10:36 AM), <http://tinyurl.com/y7ahouep>.
Seth Barrett Tillman, Free Speech Norms and Conlawprof, New Reform Club (Mar. 29, 2019, 3:13 AM), <https://reformclub.blogspot.com/2019/03/free-speech-norms-and-conlawprof.html>.